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Surrey Storm’s Lorraine Kowalewska announces retirement

Vitality Netball Superleague (VNSL) and Surrey Storm star Lorraine Kowalewska has announced her retirement from netball.

Kowalewska (Nee Betsy) has enjoyed a distinguished netball career in the VNSL playing for both Surrey Storm and Celtic Dragons.

The defender played for a number of years in Wales but returned to Surrey in December 2016 after taking a year-long break from the sport to raise her first child.

Kowalewska was a well-known figure of the VNSL for more than a decade and remained an important part of the Storm dressing room right up until the 2020 campaign – when she played in all four of her side’s games.

The 36-year-old teacher regularly delivered community camps and sessions for junior players across the region, leaving a long-lasting legacy at the club. In 2017, she was voted Personality of the Year by her Storm peers.

Announcing her retirement, Kowalewska said: “Wow, what a privilege it has been to play with some of the best netballers in the industry.

I’m so grateful to the coaches who have guided me and those who gave me an opportunity. I’ve met some lifelong friends along the way and for that I’m truly grateful.

“This season may not have ended the way I would have liked, but it certainly is ‘the last one’.

“Thank you to Surrey Storm for your commitment to me through the years but also through my toughest year last season.”

Surrey Storm Director of Netball Mikki Austin said: “Lorraine has been a stalwart of the VNSL for over a decade.

“Her service to netball in general is unparalleled and we are so lucky that she chose to see out her career in Duck Egg Blue.

“To return back to court and play some of her best netball after the birth of her daughter Yoasha speaks volumes of her dedication and attitude to training.

“Lorraine is one of the nicest people I’ve ever worked with, I wish her nothing but the best for the future and I look forward to working closely with her off the court.”

Earlier this month, Storm captain Katy Hughes also announced that she was calling time on her netball career. This followed Hannah Knights’ reitrment announcement in June.

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